Have You Heard About Keshi Pearls?

Pearls have long been a favorite of brides. It’s a fantastic fit, if you think about it. White wedding gowns… that bridal glow… brides and pearls have a lot in common! We love pearls on everything from wedding dresses to bridal earrings to pearl wedding headbands and even in bouquets. We’ve seen beautiful wedding cakes with edible pearl embellishments and vintage style wedding invitations decorated with pearl brooches. Pearls on bridal shoes? You better believe it! Pearls are everywhere!

But did you know there are different kinds of pearls? We’re all familiar with the perfectly round cultured pearls and the oval, slightly textured freshwater pearls, but there are other forms of pearl. In particular, Keshi pearls – a unique and lustrous pearl that forms accidentally as a byproduct of the pearl culturing process. These pearls are formed when the oyster spits out the ‘seed’ of a pearl or is otherwise damaged and a pearl is formed in the resulting pearl sac.

What makes Keshi pearls particularly exceptional is that unlike most pearls, which have an inner nucleus made of something like sanded mussel shells, Keshi pearls are solid nacre. That makes them quite brilliant, which more than makes up for their irregular shapes and sizes. These variations actually make them wonderful for use in Keshi pearl jewelry, since there are so many ways you can use a flattened oval where a sphere wouldn’t quite work.

Interestingly, where Keshi pearls used to be very common and thus less expensive, new pearl culturing techniques have made them more much rare and so prices have gone up. Not everywhere, though! The Keshi pearl jewelry we carry for brides is still priced right – so if these sound like the pearls for you, enjoy!

Shown: Our Keshi pearl headband; rum pink bridal headband; and Florencia pearl wedding headband

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Wedding Jewelry and More: A Champagne and Black Inspiration Board for Angie

Did you know that we’re here to answer your wedding planning questions or questions about choosing wedding jewelry? Just join us over at our Facebook page and post your question on our wall. Your bridal conundrum could just become a part of our blog!

Recently, Angie wrote to us with this question:

My wedding colors are champagne and black. We’re planning a really upscale affair and I want my bridesmaids (wearing black) to look the part. But I don’t want them to look too formal or fussy. My hope is that my wedding will be fun, too. Can you give me some style suggestions?

Absolutely, Angie! You probably already know that champagne and black weddings are on the hotlist for wedding color combos in 2012 and 2013. That may not be why you chose your wedding colors, of course, but girl, you are definitely one stylish bride! Champagne and black go together beautifully and make for a sophisticated wedding palette that’s particularly suited to evening weddings and candlelight.

Here are some of our picks in a champagne and black wedding inspiration board:

Damsel from Steve Madden; a crystal bouquet from Etsy seller Noaki; invitations from Momental Designs; our Floral Melody champagne wedding jewelry set; cake by Colorado Rose Cake Company; and a black bridesmaids dress by Dessy

What do you think of the elegant champagne and black wedding color scheme?

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Wedding Jewelry Inspiration from the First Lady

You can find wedding jewelry inspiration in so many places – including the White House. I mean, did you see First Lady Michelle Obama’s choice of necklace at the State Dinner honoring British Prime Minister, David Cameron and his wife Samantha? Tres chic!

Mrs. Obama chose a Tom Binns statement necklace made of teal, blue, silver, and white pearls layered over a huge rhinestone piece that was absolutely striking without being overwhelming. Which naturally started us thinking about layering necklaces!

Layering bridal necklaces smartly takes the right bride and the right wedding dress. In other words, it isn’t for everyone. But just in case it’s for you, we put together an inspiration board with some of our favorite pieces that we think would look amazing layered. Michelle Obama choose blue, but we thought a subtle purple look with plenty of white would look amazing on a bride who wants a little bit of color, but not too much. Enjoy!

How do you layer bridal necklaces and come out looking as brilliant as the First Lady? Step one is to choose your starting pieces – as many or as few as you like, but we suggest going bold! Step two is to practice, practice, practice. Layering isn’t easy, and the order you don your necklaces will have a lot to do with the final outcome of your efforts. It may take a few tries, but you’ll find a great combo in no time!

Shown: Our triple strand pearl and rhinestone bridal necklace; Bella amethyst pearl bridal jewelry set; Isadora Swarovski Elements bridal necklace; Lustrous pearl bridal jewelry set; elegant purple bridal jewelry set; and a triple strand of pearls.

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Wedding Color Combinations: Soft Grey and Pink

We have it on good authority that one of the hottest wedding color combinations for the 2012 and 2013 wedding seasons will be grey and pink. Not the hot pink and deep grey of year’s past, but a pretty and feminine grey and pink combo that is all things beautiful but not bright. And that’s okay. We were getting a little tired of wedding color trends that bordered on neon… weren’t you? To celebrate this new softer wedding color scheme, we’ve put together two pink and grey inspiration boards. Maybe you’ll love one or the other, but we bet bold brides will choose both and mix it up right in their own bridal party. Double the fun!

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Yes, We Have Beach Wedding Dresses!

write considering it’s now March. It would seem that December was just biding its time until February was over. In other words, we’re in the thick of an unexpected cold snap. And when things get cold, our thoughts tend to turn to all things warm. Like beach weddings. Putting flowers in our hair. And the kind of crystal bridal accessories that pick up just enough of the sunlight to outsparkle the ocean.

But what we want to talk about today is the dresses. Beach wedding dresses are some of our favorites because they’re pretty, unfussy, and easy to wear. There’s no reason to sacrifice sophistication because you’re getting married in the sand. Beach wedding dresses can take you from seaside vows to beachside reception without missing a beat. Of course, we only stock the ones we think make brides look amazing on the beach and off, and so we thought it would be fun to share some of our very favorites.

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For Bridal Jewelry, Think Tiny!

Who says your bridal jewelry has to shout? Some of this year’s wedding gowns are loud enough without adding too much noise to the mix. For Friday, we’ve chosen four delicate bridal accessories that are feminine, subtle, elegant, and sophisticated. When you look this lovely, you don’t have to shout it to the world because the world will notice you without your having to say anything at all. If you’re a bride who is worried about her wedding accessories overshadowing your gown – or playing a sad second fiddle – follow our suggestions for a balanced wedding day look that will have all of your guests singing your praises for months to come.

Our Swarovski crystal bridal bracelet and jewelry set just goes to show you that beautiful doesn’t always mean big. Our genuine Swarovski crystals are large… for Swarovski crystals, and they offer exceptional shine and movement. They’re as delicate as they are brilliant.

Pink rhinestone drop earrings are perfect for the bride who wants delicate colored bridal jewelry for her big day. They add just the right pop of pink to any bridal ensemble so you have a splash of color that doesn’t overshadow your look.

Our Charlotte jewelry set is a chic as it is subtle. Simple Austrian crystal marquis rhinestones have botanical beauty in a bridal necklace and jewelry set that is reminiscent of flowers.

The genuine Austrian crystal rhinestone necklace and earrings in this crystal bridal jewelry set are simply stunning. And we mean simple in the nicest possible way. Linked crystals move with you, making your every twist and turn brilliant. And, lest we forget, they look radiant in photographs! (As do all of the above suggestions, hint hint!)

Are you considering going small when it comes to your bridal accessories? If so, we’d love to hear why!

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For Brave Brides, Colored Bridal Jewelry

Remember our top bridal accessories trends for 2012 and 2013 weddings? Number one was color. Whether brides choose a little or a lot, we’re seeing plenty of bright, bold, and brilliant color in the weddings we’ve attended in these past two months. And we don’t see color’s momentum slowing down any time soon. Bold is the word of the year when it comes to color, and that means colored bridal jewelry! Yes, we’re talking about everything from Kelly green to tangerine and beyond.

For some, it’s a scary thought. It’s just so easy to pair a white wedding gown with crystal bridal jewelry or pearl bridal jewelry. And the color, that’s for the bouquet, right? We say, why limit yourself! Your gown will look all the whiter when you’re showing the world your true colors in colored bridal jewelry. As for how to wear it, might we suggest color matching with your shoes? Bridal shoes have long been a way to spice up a bride’s look – you can take that one step further!

Here are a few beautiful examples of color matching that involve beautiful colored bridal jewelry and bridal shoes:

Here, we’ve paired our Radiant yellow chandelier earrings with strappy sandals in brilliant yellow featuring a sweet rosette detail near the peep toe!

How about eye-catching turquoise peep toe pumps with amazing Claudette turquoise chandelier earrings? This would be an amazing combination for a bride who loves turquoise and lime!

Finally, we paired classy black bow pumps with striking black pearl bridal jewelry – a traditional, but surprising combination that will have your guests saying WOW. Are you going to wear colored bridal jewelry on your big day?

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Wedding Color Combinations: Sweet Lilac and Margarita

Pink and green is always a winning combo for weddings, but for 2012 and 2013, this combination has gotten a major overhaul. Instead of the bright pinks and greens of years past, we’re seeing more and more sweet lilac, a pale pinkish purple, paired with margarita, a muted lime green. Sweet lilac and margarita is a subtle combo – and one that works wonderfully with white as a backdrop or on its own.

Want to see it in action?

Here, we have a hypothetical bride wearing a white trumpet gown from the Monique Lhuillier Spring 2012 collection. She accessorized this gorgeous dress with a pearl and crystal bridal jewelry set in green that will coordinate perfectly with her bridesmaids, who are wearing Lela Rose bridesmaids dresses in pink and clover.

And they will coordinate perfectly with everything else! The décor, for instance, features a color blocked table that puts the sweet lilac and margarita color palette at center stage. And as for the wedding cake, it’s all about cupcakes – margarita and subtle lavender flavors are sweet without being cloying.

We actually think that’s also a great way to describe this color palette. Sweet lilac and margarita are feminine and sweet without being overpoweringly girly. It works for springtime, but isn’t so springy you can’t make it the color scheme for your summer wedding or autumn wedding.

What’s not to love?

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Accenting Tangerine Tango, Pantone’s 2012 Color of the Year

Do you get excited for Pantone’s color of the year? Last year, it was Honeysuckle – a surprising dusty pink. This year? It’s Tangerine Tango, a vivacious and appealing reddish orange. It’s a color that provides an instant energy boost. An exciting color. And one that is sure to warm you up, even if yours will be a winter wedding.

Plus, did we mention that bridesmaids look great in Tangerine Tango? It’s one of those mysterious colors that work amazingly well with any skin tone or hair hue.

The only problem that some brides who want to outfit their bridesmaids in Tangerine Tango may run into is accessorizing it. That’s where you have two options. The first is letting the tangerine take center stage and choosing crystal bridesmaid jewelry that will sparkle, but purposely underwhelm. The color is the star – the jewelry plays a backup role. The second is color blocking, aka pairing Tangerine Tango with complimentary (and sometimes surprising) colors like blue or purple.

Here are three bridesmaid looks that incorporate Pantone’s color of the year, pairing it with classic pearl bridesmaid jewelry, navy bridesmaid accessories, and if you can believe it, deep purple bridesmaid jewelry!

In the upper right, we took a saucy Tangerine Tango Alfred Sung bridesmaid dress and accessorized it with gorgeous deep purple bridesmaid jewelry and a beautiful purple clutch (that would make a great bridesmaids gift, hint hint). In the bottom right, an elegant example of After Six bridesmaids dresses gets the blue treatment with navy pearl bridesmaid jewelry and a pair of amazing heels from Badgley Mischka.

And finally, to show off how amazing Tangerine Tango can be as a showpiece color, we took classic touches like a white satin bridal handbag, a pearl bridal ring, a pearl bridal jewelry set, and a simple pearl hair comb and let them highlight the beauty of this versatile color.

All this works because even though Tangerine Tango is an incredibly vibrant color, it also works as a neutral.

What do you think of Tangerine Tango, anyway? Do you love it? Hate it? Think it’s just coral all dressed up?

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Forget Something New, Something Old Is Where It’s At!

Old Hollywood style can be seen all over celebs these days, and you know that whatever we’re seeing on the red carpet will make its way into the wedding world soon enough! Nowadays, brides are gushing over vintage everything, whether that means a sleeves that would have been at home in the 1930s, a ballet length wedding dress straight out of the 1950s, borrowed vintage wedding accessories from the 1960s, or 1980s glam sequins from head to toe.

Anything goes, as long as it’s something your mother, grandmother, or great grandmother would have loved!

Let’s start with your accessories. Bird cage veils are still a fun and flirty option for brides who want the feel of a veil without the weight of one. For a surprising take on the bird cage veil, a feather bridal hat paired with a cage veil is one way to wear it. Not a bridal veil (or bridal hat) fan? A crystal hair brooch is a glamorous vintage-look choice that can give your wedding hairstyle some sparkle! Vintage bridal jewelry is still IN, which means that you can easily find accessories that would look right at home in almost any era. Need even more? Top everything off with a vintage crystal brooch on your bodice!

For your bridesmaids, sleeves are still a surprising choice, but unless you’re getting married in the height of summer, they may be a welcome one. We’ve seen sleeves on everyone from Angelina Jolie to Anne Hathaway to Leighton Meester, and wedding dresses are once again getting the sleeve treatment. Our guess? Bridesmaids dresses with sleeves can’t be far behind!

Now how about incorporating vintage flair into your wedding itself? One idea we love also incorporates family (which is why we love it). At your reception, have a table just for displaying pictures of your ancestors – their wedding photos, if possible. Vintage and vintage-look frames can be found at thrift stores and flea markets, and if you have the time, a quick coat of paint and some glaze can give any picture frame a retro look that coordinates with your wedding colors.

So now you tell us – are you loving the vintage wedding accessories thing as much as we are? How are you incorporating vintage touches into your bridal look?

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